They have long been targets of scams. Whether identity theft or someone trying to make a quick buck, the elderly know they wear a bullseye among scammers. Now, one more person is eyeing the seniors, the attorney general. But it's for a good reason. His new task force is to protect seniors.
They are looked at as grandma and grandpa, but now, the elderly are being looked at as dollar signs. Scammers are developing more sophisticated ways to dig into their checkbooks. Jane Harlan says, "Person identified themselves as a National Verification Bureau." 82-year-old Jane Harlan answered her phone Monday and was told she had an open account with the National Verification Bureau, and they needed her bank information. Harlan says, "I said, 'I don't have it with me at the moment, but I will give it to you,' which was a mistake, but I did it anyway."
Harlan says, "There's a sense of urgency. They project a sense of urgency when they call you. You fall into that category. Sense of urgency frightens an elderly person." To help seniors not be so frightened, the Attorney General's Office is starting an Elder Financial Abuse Task Force. The task force is to help seniors keep their money out of the predators' hands.
Godfrey White with the Governor's Office of Elderly Affairs says, "Because if we don't know about it, we can't diminish it." The plan is to set up a hotline the elderly can call if they suspect they've been a victim of a scam. Luckily for Harlan, she made it to the bank to cancel her account, before any damage was done.
The phone number for the AG's task force is 1-800-259-4990. You can call it if you think you've been a victim of a financial crime. As for Harlan, she's setting up new accounts because she feels her privacy was invaded.